Although Silicon Valley remains the nation's top city for edtech deals, the third most well-funded education technology company is New York-based Knewton, which raised $42 million in November. In an analysis of the space, CB Insights noted New York "has quietly grown its own ecosystem of edtech startups and is just a tad less than Silicon Valley" in percentage of deals.
As the city continues to grow its hub, there are a number of startups using technology to change the way teachers teach and students learn. We've rounded up 20 NYC-based edtech startups that are revolutionizing technology in the classroom.
What they do: Skillshare is an online learning community for creators that makes it easier to take or teach a class, as well as connect with others.
How it's changing education: Users get unlimited access to over 150,000 classes which run the gamut from ink drawing techniques to street photography to HTML tutorials. To date, the company has garnered over two million students and aims to help close the professional skills gap by providing universal access to high-quality learning.
What they do: Teachable is a learning destination where instructors can craft their own courses to share their knowledge and skills.
How it's changing education: Teachable has more than 20,000 active courses, 10,000 online instructors and over five million students learning on a simple, all-in-one platform.
What they do: Teachers Pay Teachers is the world’s largest online marketplace for original educational content, as well as an online resource for teachers seeking information or educational strategies.
How it's changing education: Teachers Pay Teachers offers teaching resources on almost every subject imaginable, and also includes a large community of educators offering advice and strategies. Educators can easily search for different activities, like games or printable worksheets, for a wide range of subjects.
What they do: Noodle helps parents and students find schools, educational resources and tutors based on interests, strengths and needs. A community of experts are also on hand to answer questions.
How it's changing education: Education World described Noodle's preschool database, which allows parents to personalize their search based on a number of criteria, as "Yelp for preschools."
What they do: Newsela helps students build their reading comprehension skills by publishing daily news articles from such sources as the Washington Post and Associated Press across five different reading levels for grades 2-12.
How it's changing education: The edtech startup's new app lets users set their reading level and then browse Newsela's library of articles. Students can join a teacher's classroom, read assigned articles and take quizzes to test comprehension.
What they do: Girls Who Code is a non-profit organization that introduces high school girls to computer science through instruction in coding fundamentals, web development and design. The group offers summer immersion programs, scholarships and after-school clubs.
How it's changing education: The number of women who graduate with degrees in computer science is a mere 18 percent, while only 0.4 percent of high school girls express interest in majoring in the field, according to the group's website. Girls Who Code works to close the gender gap through teaching, mentoring and engagement.
What they do: Aimed at educational institutions but available for use at home or work, Neverware enables users to experience the power and speed of a new computer without discarding their old hardware. The company’s software converts an old Mac or PC to a Google Chromium-like OS while using cloud technology to run a slow computer quickly and efficiently.
How it’s changing education: Neverware offers flexible pricing for schools, including an annual option of $1 per student, allowing institutions to forgo the expensive headache of upgrading.
What they do: Codecademy is a free platform that can help you learn to code different programming languages through easy, hands-on lessons.
How it's changing education: The platform uses a network approach, allowing students to interact while they learn new skills and build incredible projects. The simple, laid-out courses have enabled millions of people to learn to code, interactively, worldwide.
What they do: 2U is a SaaS company dedicated to helping educational institutions personalize and scale online learning.
How it's changing education: The 2U edtech platform is helping universities reach a wider base of students. The company has partnered with top universities like Harvard, University of North Carolina and Northwestern to create tailored, virtual educational experiences.
Funding: Publicly Traded
What they do: Using an adaptive learning platform that can tailor lessons to a student's strengths and weaknesses, Knewton is like having a highly sophisticated personal tutor with 24-7 availability. The technology uses data to learn things about the student, such as how long they stay focused on a history lesson, or whether video is more effective than text when learning science. Knewton then uses these data points to create more effective lessons.
How it's changing education: After introducing the technology in classrooms at a high-poverty public school in Baltimore, students saw a 25 percent increase in reading scores over the previous year.
What they do: Schoology, founded by four college students in 2009, offers a Learning Management System for K-12 schools and universities that facilitates collaboration, communication and resource sharing on a single platform. The company's LMS is used by more than 12 million users worldwide.
How it's changing education: There are numerous case studies, but one example is the Fairview School District in Pennsylvania, which used Schoology's LMS to support its 1:1 iPad implementation program. The setup gave teachers the ability to individually assign tasks to students according to their needs and present lessons using a method (video, audio, etc.) that worked best for the student.
What they do: Supported by a team of scientists, developers, linguists, teachers and communication specialists, Voxy is an English language learning platform for individuals, educational institutions and corporations.
How it’s changing education: Roughly 85% of Voxy users achieve proficiency in English, all the more remarkable when considering it is used by more than four million people across 150 nations.
What they do: Socratic is a crowd-sourced platform by which students and teachers can create learning resources. The education site houses teacher-uploaded video lessons across core subjects and currently has 10.6 million users worldwide.
How it's changing education: Socratic's mission is to help students that are increasingly turning to Google for answers find accurate and custom-created solutions to their questions.
What they do: The Brainscape app uses adaptive flashcard algorithms to make studying more fun and effective by repeating concepts in patterns optimized to the student's learning pace. Teachers can use the software to set up classroom pages, create decks and track learning progress. Brainscape's database includes flashcards on everything from Shakespeare to gynecology.
How it's changing education: A Columbia University study cited on the company's website found students who study for 30 minutes using the Brainscape method see a two-fold increase in their retention abilities.
What they do: With offerings like Historia, which teaches kids world history by letting them follow a civilization through time, E-Line Media has brought game-based-learning to hundreds of thousands of students in more than 10,000 classrooms and after-school programs. Games are designed around major core subjects such as history, language arts, science and math.
How it's changing education: The edtech startup partnered with the ASU Center for Games and Impact to develop a middle-school learning platform called Thrive, which focuses on teaching history, language arts, math, science and new literacies. Its Gamestar Mechanic platform also teaches youths how to create and design their own games.
What they do: LightSail is an adaptive literacy education technology platform that creates libraries for students based on their reading abilities. The program integrates assessment monitoring throughout each assignment, which tracks achievement and then updates the student's library.
How it's changing education: Teachers get real-time data on reading behavior, comprehension and growth. Educators can then fine-tune the instruction to meet an individual student's needs.
What they do: Slate Science specializes in creating adaptive learning tablet-based education technology for science, engineering and mathematics, grades K-12.
How it's changing education: The company created Matific, a family of apps that helps students in K-6 learn math skills through interaction with small activities that increase in complexity.
How it's changing education: Teachers are using the Vidcode technology to help students learn about such topics as chemistry and climate change.
What they do: Story2, a Techstars company, uses an online writing platform to help high school students write compelling college admissions essays. The software coaches young writers on how to develop their voice and relate personal moments through their work. Users can complete their essays on their own, or with the help of trained coaches and admissions consultants.
How it's changing education: According to Story2, more than 20,000 students have used the program and 90 percent were accepted into one or more of their top college choices. Of those accepted, 83 percent were offered scholarship aide.
What they do: KnowRe, founded in Korea but headquartered in New York, uses adaptive learning technology to help students learn math. The software breaks down a math question into its essential components and assesses which steps in the process the student got wrong, helping teachers identify gaps in learning and develop individualized curriculum.
How it's changing education: Math teachers are using the company's educational software to scale personalized learning and improve math skills.
What they do: Based on the research and pedagogy of educational psychologist Dr. Alice Wilder, Speakaboos is a mobile education platform for early childhood literacy and language learning. Through its library of interactive stories and songs, which includes Sesame Street, the company's apps work to engage children in content through interaction.
How it's changing education: In October of last year, Speakaboos partnered with Sunburst Digital to create Speakaboos for Schools. The initiative is helping bring the technology to elementary classrooms around the country.